The Educator’s Toolkit: Skills for Success (EDU 530) 3 credits
The first in a sequence of courses on the fundamentals of teaching and learning, this class introduces the essential skills and conceptual thinking used by educators today. Students will emerge with a toolbox of skills which they can flexibly adapt to a variety of educational contexts, as well as a solid foundation of concepts which will inform the rest of their coursework and their practice as educators. Topics explored include lesson planning, classroom community and behavior management, differentiated instruction, and assessment.
Curriculum Design (EDU 534) 3 credits
What should we teach and why? This course provides a variety of frameworks for making some of the most important educational decisions. Bridging theory and practice, the course builds expertise in Understanding by Design, models of curriculum integration, project-based learning, the role of curriculum in experiential education, and curriculum applications to a variety of educational settings. Taken in conjunction with Teaching and Learning II, the course gives students an opportunity to design a curriculum unit in an area of their interest and for a setting of their choosing.
Advanced Seminar in Teaching and Learning (EDU 536) 3 credits
In this seminar, students would apply their directed readings toward the design of a major curriculum project. Building on their summer readings course, they would work individually or in small groups with a scholar in their discipline at AJU. This is a way to take their newly honed content expertise and put it into practice, thinking about ways to enact/apply their new knowledge to the particular students and settings in which they teach. In this seminar, graduating students write their pedagogic creed, prepare their teaching portfolio, and engage in inquiry-based self-study to advance their professional practice.
Reflective Practice I (EDU 546) 1 credit
The first in a series of classes that engage students in reflecting on their developing practice as educators, this course gives an introduction to individual and collaborative reflective practices. Students will learn to get the most out of mentoring relationships, practice techniques for observing teaching and learning and develop shared language for discussing those experiences.
Reflective Practice II (EDU 547) 1 credit
Students form a professional learning community and engage in structured, professional conversations about their teaching practice. We participate in a variety of “protocols” designed to spur reflection on teaching through careful focus on student work, enduring dilemmas, and samples of teacher-generated materials. Students continue to articulate their ongoing goals for development as an educator.
Sociology of Education (EDU 510) 2 credits
“Community” is the theme of our study together. We will begin by experiencing educational strategies designed to create a sense of community in the classroom - the smallest, and one of the most important, communities that make up the broader phenomenon of “community.” We will look at the development of the American Jewish community in the twentieth century and how the institutions of Jewish education we know today evolved. We will learn about successful afternoon religious schools, day schools and family education and explore the growing field of experiential education, focusing on summer camps and Israel trips.
Educational Psychology (EDU 515) 3 credits
This course is an introduction to the field of Human Development focusing on major issues, theories and developmental benchmarks that impact learners from birth through adolescence and adulthood. Attention will be directed to the physical, cognitive, social/emotional and moral/spiritual development of students. There will be opportunities to examine how to incorporate insights and knowledge of human development when planning and working with individual learners and groups of Jewish learners including those at different ages and developmental stages. In addition students will be asked to reflect about their own experiences and how those experiences may impact their interactions and values as Jewish educators.
Educational Leadership I and II (EDU 550/551.02) 3 credits each
Mirroring the Educational Administration sequence but tailored for the MAT program, this sequence examines leadership and organizational theories as they apply to the leadership roles that teachers typically assume. Students study topics in philosophy of education to explore the importance of vision in educational institutions as well as the practical realm of implementation.
Special Topics in Teaching Judaics (EDJ 580) 6 credits
This 6 credit course dedicates the entire evening block of spring semester (5 hours) to the investigation and analysis of prevalent orientations to the teaching of various Judaic content areas in Jewish schools. These content areas include Bible; Rabbinic Texts; God/Theology and Liturgy; Jewish history; Israel; and Holidays. Everyone will gain exposure to the breadth of topics to gain an understanding of the structure of each discipline, multiple methods of conveying the content to children, and the function of the subject in the life of a contemporary Jew and in building a foundation for lifelong Jewish learning. Deeper emphasis on certain topics over others will be determined based on the makeup of the cohort. Students will be introduced to various models of teaching, including the classic chavruta, direct instruction, discussion leading and lecture, as well as creative methodologies utilizing the arts, projects, integration, etc.
The course will be facilitated by a member of the education faculty with expertise in day school curriculum and teaching, and will feature guest lecturers with subject area expertise to give mini-modules on their content areas. The full evening 6 credit format provides more flexibility for longer workshops that combine content investigation as well as pedagogical applications. Each student will produce a multidisciplinary project (such as a curriculum map, integration plan or scope and sequence) to demonstrate understanding of a variety of disciplines, with a feature of that project on their own area of study (such as a teaching module).
Readings in Judaic Studies (EDJ 599) 3 credits
The readings course is an opportunity for each MAT student to delve independently or in small groups into a content area that is relevant to his or her teaching. Students will develop a reading list in consult with an appointed faculty advisor with expertise in her or her chosen discipline. Much of the reading should be conducted over the summer, with the culminating assessments due in the Fall of year 2.
Full-time students complete two years of teaching fieldwork and one year of administrative fieldwork. Fieldwork serves a laboratory for students to experiment with and practice the skills and models encountered in their coursework. Actual number of hours will vary for working professionals pursuing the degree. Students may choose from a wide array of fieldwork opportunities, in consultation with the fieldwork coordinator. (Specific guidelines for fieldwork requirements are published in the academic catalog.)